Friday, November 29, 2013

I could sleep for my country

Yesterday, no word of a lie, I slept easily 20 hours out of 24. Wow. So tired. And I still went to bed on time and slept all night. I had food ready to warm up which was nice...I definitely was run down. ABout a week post chemo I seem to have a few days of utter exhaustion so I'm learning to plan for them so I can just nap and recouperate.
Thankfully, today, I feel quite nice. Yes I am still low energy, but not the marrow sucking, mopey, unable to form sentences sort of tired I was yesterday. Oh yes -Today I have put on pants! Today I have made slow cooker veg chili and tea and am enjoying mental clarity and doing a few little things around the house. I am looking forward to the weekend with J, since he has been working long days all week, and is also tired, so we can have every excuse to relax together on the weekend, watch movies together, eat healthy food and rest up.  I hope you are all having a wonderful day. The cats and I are :)

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Rapunzel

Yesterday was fun. Despite being tired my best friend came by to cheer me up and get me out for a bit and we drove a ways to a cool wig shop in another city...and in the end I bought a few wigs. And you know I really hadn't realized how nice it would be to have the option to look into the mirror and see regular old me looking back. Most days I don't mind. Really...but some days...well...I feel a bit like this:
Rapunzel by Dina Goldstein (Fallen Princesses)
It was nice to get out and be a bit normal and wander a bit and try on all manner of rediculous hair (I am definitely *not* meant to be a curly strawberry blonde!!) but I think we pushed it, cuz today... I am just pooped. Just utterly exhausted. So.... I will rest and nap in my new PJs and eat my FILs delicious soup.
Hope you are all warm and toasty where ever you all are. Happy thanksgiving to all my american friends. There much to be grateful for.
And pie.
Don't you dare forget the pie :)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Chillin wif my furry peeps

Hullo!
Just settling for a post chemo week of recovery and feeling tired, but ok. J is back at work today but I hope he can come home at lunch for a bit :). My good friend Heather may pop by for tea too. We shall see. I have been noshing on my fave Bolthouse smoothies as breakfasts and some amazing homemade chicken soup from my FIL (the man knows his soup!) and getting by the last few days. 

I am itching to get my stitches out from my port next monday so I can get the ok to exercise my arms and sweat a bit and try out the new exercise bike we picked up before my last chemo. J assembled it yesterday and we found a home for it in our newly floored living room and I am most excited and giggly about it. Last week at Canadian Tire the high end Livestrong spin bikes with hrm that are usually around $1900 were on for 65% off, which my job's incredible health and wellness plan should reimburse me for the rest of in a few weeks so I have an awesome tool to keep me healthy. I could not be more pleased. :)

And a gratuitous shot of the front door tiles...cuz I'm proud of our work!

J helped me pull out and set up the christmas tree so I can slowly decorate it this week as I get some energy back. I love christmas decorations :) Today I am just going to take it easy and rest with a good book...and ok probably start on the tree, who am I trying to kid! My white blood cell counts are lower so I need to rest up and stay away from sickly peoples and let my body recover. My old bff who is a fabulous knitter sent me a few gorgeous hats in a care package from the UK where she lives and it's like she popped by for tea. I am feeling most loved. :)

Hope you have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Goo goo gachooo

I am the eggman.
Last night after having my port installed in my arm (owie) for my chemo IV treatments J and I ran a few errands and then I popped by the place where we get our hair cut and told them to shave my head (they didn't even charge me - so nice of them).  I was tired of it coming out slowly and shedding all over everything and wanted to have it done by someone so I wouldn't have to clean up the mess!
So I am now bald...and it actually looks kind of badass :)  Luckily I look OK with no hair...my head is nice and roundy and smooth. There was an old lady getting a perm beside me in the salon and she kept glancing over looking at me wondering what on earth I was doing...it was funny. I noticed in the mall too how it's odd how kids and happy people are honest in their looking at your head and smiling and then just moving on and looking away while the odd person is genuinely uncomfortable by the fact that you have no hair and keeps looking back over and over while trying not to be obvious. It's funny (sure it will get annoying after a while)...made me want to stick my tongue out at them just to see their reaction!! The last tweedles will come out soon - I just wanted to deal with it on my terms and I'm glad I did. J is fine with it and so am I so the rest of the world can just learn to cope too.
I must say -it is so very cold and odd to feel the breeze on my head though. I feel like a devon rex cat when you rub my head!! Soon it will smooth out and be less fuzzy. Thankfully I have many lovely hats, so I'm good to go right now and will keep warm. I ordered some head scarves as well that should be here any day so I will have plenty to keep my head warm. I don't mind walking about without a hat...it's just chilly!
Today I must nurse my sore arm (can't take painkillers for it. Boo) and get caught up on some lab work.  I can't do any upperbody lifting or work until I get my stitches out in a few weeks so I'm going to just concentrate on walking and hopefully using an exercise bike if we can find one this week. I need to reign myself in a bit - now that my appetite is back and I feel better I'm eating more than I probably need to.  But...I must be off. My lab awaits.
Later taters :)

Monday, November 18, 2013

We have normality

Well, my Dad headed back home yesterday morning. It was so nice to see him, but it's nice to have our house back to just us. J and I spent the day cleaning the fine layer of sawdust on everything and returning the remaining furniture back to a "normal" state on the main floor. Our house is now a home again, only uberfied, clean and slightly more echoey.
I love it.
The new floor is amazing...
We spent the rest of the day organizing and cleaning. Having this work done has been a real kick in the butt to organize things a bit and really sort through things as we put things back and reorganize other areas in the house. Since I'm feeling pretty good right now I can help J (who is the organized one of the pair of us...I more of the make a bunch of hidden piles sort of gal). It's starting to come together and I must say it's going to be so nice to be home in a clean, allergen reduced house when I have my next chemo treatment on friday. Instead of looking around at all the things that need done I will be able to just rest and recover.
One peeve I do have is that I noticed when we were moving things around in the house yesterday that I really am not as strong as I used to be and so I'm going to set myself up a workout area and try and do some workouts this week. I don't like feeling weak. I mean yes...I have a good reason, but I also have no reason to not make more of an effort when I can. I shovelled some snow this morning as my morning "workout"...it's something.
Jay and I had an evening together which was nice. After a week of house upside down with renos and craziness it was nice to sit in our "new" house. I still have my hair in this chilly weather so far to keep my head warm...although it's really thinning- I can pull it out without really trying, so it's not long on my noggan. I'm humming and hawing...tonight I may just head to a salon and have my head shaved and be done with it. The waiting is killing me. Just wish it wasn't -20 out...glad I have a bunch of hats to keep my brain warm! :)

Friday, November 15, 2013

Awake

Last night we took Dad out for chinese food to say thanks for all his hard work and I had a lot of yummy jasmine tea with my meal...and then couldn't sleep until 1 AM! I forget that I'm caffeine free now and really feel a difference when I have even a bit of it. I was all pumped up and couldn't sleep eat the end of a long day so I'm a bit tired today as a result. I didn't get to the tile grouting last night...we just relaxed and visited. We did still get our kitchen all back together like it should be though.
Dad should finish the floor today and we'll be going to Rona for the last of the finishing stuff tonight - baseboards and the like. Dad's also offered to replace our really leaky bathroom faucet. What a guy...It's been so good to see him this week and so amazing to have my home transformed like it has been. It's really remarkable how nice the laminate looks!
Next week I'm going to get up early and go in to work out again when I can. I can tell I'm losing muscle tone in my arms and legs...my shirts fit a bit different and people have commented that I look thinner. I have lost a few pounds just from not eating a lot last week so I'm trying to eat well, but really feel the need to get some workouts in too. This morning I had a checkup so I had to be in early so with the lack of sleep I didn't get in any exercise, but I know I can try to be active when I can...maybe bust out a few squats or pushups in the office? :) We'll see.
Have a nice weekend everyone. Today is was my mum's birthday so I've been thinking of her a lot today. I wish we could have birthday tea and sit and chat. I plan to have a wonderful day and toast her memory with my Dad tonight. It's my last normal weekend before my next chemo so I hope to get out and about and enjoy myself as much as I can. :)
Later taters...

Thursday, November 14, 2013

So far so good

I needed a bit of colour around here. Spruced up the place a bit. I like. :)

I am happy to say that I did not nap yesterday! Wohoo!
It was a long tiring day, but it was nice to be at work and feel useful.
I got home on a sunny snowfilled day to find my Dad 1/3 done the laminate...my house looks amazing...I cannot thank my Dad enough for what he has done. I will post some pics when it's completed. It's like a new uberhouse...a bit more echoey...and a LOT more my styley. Also had a good visit last night from my bestie. A long but good day. :)

Today I tried a cup of decaf for the first time since chemo. I've been putting it off because I do love me my coffee and I was so worried it would taste wrong...but I am glad to say the metallic taste that lingers in my mouth from chemo doesn't mess with the golden goodness of java. Thank frog. I am also happy to report that although most chocolate now tastes like putrified earwax, white chocolate is somehow still OK, although ginger is still right out sadly.

Tonight I will try my hand at grouting some tile when I get home so we can use our front door again and if we can get out stove back in the kitchen I can make supper for Dad. We've been taking him out for supper as thanks for all the work he's been doing. He really has been working so hard...laying laminate when you're 72 is no easy feat. I want to make him his favourite supper tonight if I can.

I should dash. I have annual inspections today so I need to go make sure the labs are tip top ship shape.
Later taters.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I'm back baby

Today I am trying my hand at being back at work. I am still tired a lot, but have more energy than previously so I figured since I was actually feeling like working I'd give it a go.
J and I are going to pick out an exercise bike on the weekend so I can get back to workouts. Other than some walks and helping my Dad a bit as he does some renos to our house I have been taking it easy. Dad offered to replace our 30 year old carpet with some laminate and put some lino in our kitchen so that my immune system and allergies will be better during treatments. Poor guy...Dont' think he realised what he was getting into. The lino and tile by the front door are done and look amazing and the next few days he's going to putter away at the flooring. I am so grateful to have a handy dad who can help use with this stuff. It is so much cheaper when you're just buying materials...and watching him I've learned how to install tiles and lay lino down which is a cool thing.

I am determined to make it through today without taking a desk nap - we shall see. I have to be germophobic and do my best to rest when I need to but I'm hoping for a bit of normality for the next week and a half until my next treatment. I still have my hair, but likely not for much longer, so we will see just how that goes.

For now...it's off the to world of science for a while to see what everyone has been up to the last while.

Later taters

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Smoothies

Good morning. I'm feeling pretty good today. Not queasy at all...just very tired. Definitely a good thing.

This is what I had for breakfast...and man. SO good.
I threw in some kale too and a tsp of honey too. I love beets...and this is definitely a healthy awesome smoothie of a breakfast for me. And yes...it makes a LOT. And I loved it. I've slugged it down over the morning and enjoyed every bit. My taste buds are starting to go all odd with the chemo so I am hunting down super healthy things I still love the taste of that I can an make even when I feel lousy and this is definitely a breakfast of champions for me. Soups I get bored of, but smoothies are an endless possibility of combinations...
Sure it's pink (I hate pink...and oh, I could rant for hours about the irony of having the "pink" cancer...) but try it. :)
Today I plan to visit a bit with my sister in law when she stops in and try again at knitting myself a hat. The last hat I knit fit my 5 year old niece perfectly...he heh...so yeah. I need some practice!
Hope you all have a wonderful day. :)

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Well I didn't see that coming - a new journey is afoot

Hello there you fine peoples.
I've been away much lately. Sorry. But really...I've had my reasons. I figured now that I've had some time to roll them about in my head and come to terms with them I'll lay them out here too...I have come to a new point in my life where my focus is still on my health and well being but for a radical new (slightly scary) reason. Grab a suitably fluffy cute animal and a drink and settle in and I'll tell you all about it...

You may have noticed that the last few months I've been getting many medical tests done. Why? Well - beginning of september J and I found a lump in my breast. Having done my MSc on breast cancer research I knew the thing to do was to get it tested but wasn't too concerned, since my mum and sis both had "normal" lumpy breasts so I figured I was joining the normal lumpy crew of many women out there who have fibrous breasts with nothing to worry about health wise. But I know Rule #1 - if you find a lump check it. No matter what.
After my mammogram which was suspicious I was sent on for other tests...biopsies, CT scans, MRI and bone scans...and just over a week ago I had it confirmed to me that I do, without a doubt, have breast cancer. There are two small lumps in my right breast. Shocking yes to know, but I am so very grateful despite it all to report it is stage 2 breast cancer - treatable. There are a few positive lymph nodes but the rest of my body appears squeaky clean...this kinda thing with the treatment I'm being given has a 90% cure rate.  So bring it.
I've been a bit silent lately as I tried to keep up with my workouts and stay healthy going into all this because I firmly believe that (gulp) despite having cancer, in the words of some of my pathologist friends I have one of the better types to have because we caught it in time. I can be treated and cured. I am young and healthy and going into this in great health with all that brings with me to fight this and kick it's azz. I have a great job with benefits that will let me take all the time I need to heal and great friends and family supporting me. So many other people I see in the cancer centre are not starting out with such a bounty of health, knowledge and kindness and I am blessed. Truly.

Starting this past friday morning I began down my treatment journey. After a prior meeting with my oncologist (on my birthday no less :/ )  where we went through what would be best we formed a battle plan. I started in on chemotherapy first to ensure my body stays clean and possibly shrink the tumors a bit. This means IVs of things every 3 weeks for the next 6 months...3 months of a combination of 3 drugs and then 3 months of 2 others...then I will have surgery and radiation in the spring and hormone therapy after it all heals up in to ensure this beast doesn't come back. Friday morning, with J at my side I had my first chemo treatment and I am glad to report that although I don't feel like a rose, I am tired and queasy but still kicking. I know as treatments progress it will get tougher but I am determined that this path I've been given must be lived to the fullest with all it's ups and downs...
And so my new goal here on this page in my life is to learn all I can and work to compliment my treatments with exercise. I've been told by my docs to try and keep with my fitness as I can because even though it is good to maintain my health it will also be very helpful at helping me deal with the treatments. Right now I'm just 1 treatment in and I'm glad to say that after 5 days, today I could do a bit of some upper body weight work and have been able to get out on walks with J whenever I get a boost of energy. I plan to buy a bike for home and hop on it here and there when I get a burst of energy and just work on keeping moving when I can, rest when I need to and concentrate on feeding my body with healthy whole foods. Fruit smoothies and homemade soups and breads have kept me going the last few days and now that my nausea is fading I will keep feeding myself foods that will fuel my body and keep me healthy.

SO yeah...that's where I'm at. I don't want this to define my life, but yet it changes everything is some little way, so I plan to take this on in my own way. My soon to be shiny head and I will be embarking on a whole new healthy journey and it's scary as hell but I know I can do it.
Here's to life and all it's craziness. Here we go :)